15th October 1808: another significant date

This is the date written in the corner of the earliest known drawing by Ellen Hutchins, and now in a bound volume of over 230 of them held in the Archives at Kew Gardens.

We know that Ellen made her first ever drawing of a part of a seaweed in July  1808, and that by the end of November 1808 she had completed a drawing of the whole of that seaweed, Velvet Horn, or Fucus tomentosus, and a number of drawings of other seaweeds, Confervae.

The earliest date we had found written on a drawing of a Conferva was a very indistinct one that we thought might have been October 18th 1808, but we were not confident enough to use it.

Now, with 15th October, we have one that we are confident about, and the wonderful serendipity to this tale is that we confirmed the date on the drawing, very late in the evening on the same day on which we sorted out the Opening date for the Ellen Hutchins exhibition at the Boole Library University College Cork. And the Opening is on Monday 15th October, exactly 210 years after Ellen made that drawing.